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Consumer prices in the United States are still high, but down a bit from the 9.1 percent annual rise – breaking a 40-year record – seen last month, according to the Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index.

Last month prices were 8.5 percent higher than they were a year ago, primarily due to a 7.7 percent drop in gasoline prices from the previous month.

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However, gas prices are still 44 percent higher than they were last year. The average price at the pump for unleaded regular was $4.03 on Tuesday – down from $4.70 in June.

Rent and food are still skyrocketing; grocery prices rose by 1.1 percent in July – and they’re 10.9 percent higher than they were in 2021. The cost of rent rose by 0.5 percent.

There was no real change in core consumer costs, with a 0.3 percent rise in the July figures and 5.9 percent annually.

In June, consumer prices rose 1.3 percent. Core prices that month rose 0.7 percent.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.